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Posts tagged “Cherry Choke

Top 20 of 2011 – Jake’s Picks

Shortly after I wrote last year’s Top 20 list, I knew it was going to be interesting to write this year’s. I’ll be honest, I didn’t hold out much hope for 2011 after the year that 2010 was. There were several huge releases in ’10 that I figured would put it on top for, at least, a few years. Sure, there were a few heavily anticipated releases I knew were coming in ’11 like Graveyard‘s Hisingen Blues, but that still paled in comparison. It wasn’t until this year started to go along that it was clear that 2011 was just as good, if not better, than 2010. This was helped along by several amazing hidden gems that were discovered throughout the year. I must have had fun discovering and enjoying all of this music because 2011 flew by faster than any year in recent memory.

In comparing last year to this year, I did find something curious. Last year, Bill and I shared similar lists with 10 matching entries with several of those in nearly identical placements on our lists. This year, things are a bit different. I only count 7 matches, and only 2 with a similar position. Consider the additional albums on this list an early Christmas gift from the cosmos.

As always, the creating of these lists are extremely hard, and I hate to leave some very deserving bands off of a list like this. Unfortunately, I can’t include every amazing album on this list. This year’s list has been worked on all year. I’ve meticulously arranged albums as I’ve listened to them throughout this year, continually going back to adjust their standings. Some bands have moved up, some have moved down, and some have flew to the top, seemingly out of nowhere. (more…)


Top 20 of 2011 – Bill’s Picks

Well it’s that time of year again. Time to name my favorite albums of 2011. 2011 brought us a lot of good stuff by a lot of great bands. 2011 also brought on a lot of surprises from bands that were really unknown until their material was released or well afterwards. Bandcamp played a huge role in music discovery for me. It turned out hundreds of great albums not only released in 2011 but in years past as well. This list, my favorites as well as honorable mentions, is no way a complete list of what was released this year. There is just to much out there that I don’t either have time to get to, never heard of or won’t discover until well after this year is completely over. I know there’s going to be a few surprises. Let it be known that I listened to a LOT of new albums this year and picking my top 20 out of the hundreds was very hard to do.

20. The Sade – Damned Love – (review) I really didn’t know what to expect when this one came across my desk but I needed to check it out. And check it out I did. I was pretty damn impressed that I listened to the album at least 10 times in a row. In my review I stated “The majority of the album is all alchchol fueled hard rock. Throughout my listening of the album I couldn’t help but think that this is what Social Distortion may sound like if they were more rooted in 70′s hard rock as opposed to their punk roots.” Granted it’s been a few months since I’ve listened to it, it still has a strong spot in my top 20.

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Review – Cherry Choke – A Night in the Arms of Venus

I think the correct online term used to describe A Night in the Arms of Venus would be OMG! For those who don’t know, Cherry Choke is one of the many projects past and present from the very talented Mathew Bethancourt. Mathew has been/is in Josiah and Kings of the Frog Island among many others. Cherry Choke owes their sound to back in a simpler time in music going back to the garage rock days of the 1960’s. Mix in a little bit of heavy psych and psychedelics and there you go.

A Night in the Arms of Venus starts off with a very basic sound that beckons back to the early 60’s. It reminds me of early material by The Who’s My Generation and even bits of A Quick One. This album seems a lot heavier on the psychedelia than their self titled debut. The tunes are fast paced, offer a lot of great guitar riffs and is quite the throw back to a much simpler time in music. (more…)